China to ban all apps from requiring excessive personal data starting May

As of May 1, mobile apps in China won’t be able to require users to provide excessive user data according to a new document shared by a group of top Chinese regulators including the Cyberspace Administration, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the State Administration for Market Regulation and the Ministry of Public Security. 

Mobile users in China often lose access to services provided by mobile apps if they don’t accept sharing required personal information. While some apps require fundamental permissions such as users’ location info to offer them a navigation service, there are many apps that require unnecessary personal data such as their biometrics to allow them to make payments. 

[REPORT] Which apps share how much of your personal data?

Back in December 2020, Chinese regulators shared the acceptable range of user data that 39 common mobile app types are able to access and collect. 

The new document says the requirements will apply to all mobile apps, including ‘’mini programs’’ as known as lite apps which can be accessed via an native app such as Alipay and WeChat without requiring users to download from the app stores.

Also Read: Apple Warns Developers Of App Takedowns In China As Beijing Tightens Control

While the new document jointly shared by the top Chinese regulators doesn’t reveal how the government will enforce the rules and how developers who don’t comply with the rules will be penalized, developers that offer apps in China are recommended to use it as a guideline. 

Written by Jordan Bevan


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